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Business Climate: Operating Costs

Douglasville’s operating costs are well below that of other locations in Metro Atlanta. Whether it’s the cost of labor, real estate or taxes, Douglasville has a competitive cost advantage over many other communities in the region. When one considers the cost advantages Metro Atlanta has over similar sized areas, Douglasville stands out as an excellent value for new and expanding businesses.

Average Pay

Workers Compensation

Workers Comp Rates Comparative Costs State Index
South Carolina
New York


  • Georgia law requires that employers with three or more full or part time employees carry workers’ compensation insurance.
  • Premium credits or discounts may be available to qualified businesses with a Certified Drug Free Work Force Program and companies that use a certified Workers Comp Managed Care Organization.
  • Rate decreases have been approved in Georgia many of the last few years. The latest decrease was 1.3 percent enacted in July 2005.

Unemployment Insurance

  • Georgia’s tax rate for experienced employers was 1.6 % of taxable wages, as of first quarter 2008.
  • The rate for new employers was 2.7 percent of each employee’s first $8,500 of earnings.

Electric Rates

  • Georgia Power and GreyStone Power provide electric service in Douglasville and are two of the most price competitive electric companies in the Southeast.
  • Georgia offers companies a competitive power environment. Most new facilities with electrical loads greater than 900 KW are open to supplier competition.

Real Estate

  • Metro Atlanta’s office and industrial rental rates well below that of other major markets.
  • Properties in Douglasville offer lower lease and purchase rates than most other locations in Metro Atlanta.
  • Construction costs in Metro Atlanta are consistently below the average of other metropolitan areas its size and mild winters allow for year-round construction activity.

Corporate Net Income Tax

  • Georgia’s current corporate income tax is 6 percent, ranking it eighth lowest in the nation (Tax Foundation, FY2009).
  • Georgia’s corporate income tax is based on a single-factor apportionment, weighted solely on sales receipts in Georgia.

Corporate Net Worth Tax (Franchise Tax)

  • This annual tax imposed on a corporation’s net worth (capital stock plus retained earnings) in Georgia is called a license or occupation tax.
  • Domestic operations are taxed on 100 percent of net worth. Out-of-state corporations are taxed only on net worth apportioned to Georgia and are determined by the following scale:
Net Worth in Georgia
Annual Tax
$4 million
$12 million
$22 million or more

Real and Personal Property Taxes

  • Taxes on real and tangible personal property are levied by the city, county, school districts and state.
  • Millage rates are the tax dollars owed for each $1,000 of a property’s assessed valuation. In most cases the assessed valuation is 40 percent of the property’s fair market value.
  • All ad valorem rates are set at the local level except the state portion, which is fixed at one quarter of a mill (.00025) by Georgia law. The effective rate is 10 cents per every $1,000 of fair market value.
  • Property taxes in Douglasville for 2009 are:

    Douglas County Schools
    18.3500 mills
    Douglas County
    7.9320 mills
    City of Douglasville
    3.8540 mills
    Douglas County School Bond
    3.0000 mills
    City of Douglasville Bond
    1.2860 mills
    34.4220 mills

Sales and Use Tax

  • Georgia levies a 4% sales tax on purchases (other than real estate) delivered to or stored in the state that are used or consumed in the business.
  • Counties and other local jurisdictions have adopted additional sales and use taxes. In Douglasville the additional rate is 2%.
  • Sales taxes in Douglasville for 2009 are:

Tax Exemptions

  • Freeport Inventory Property Tax Exemption: This incentive provides tax exemptions for a company’s inventory.
  • Property Tax Exemption. The exemption is administered at the local level and provides real and personal property tax relief against city, county and school taxes. It is a discretionary incentive that requires the Douglasville Development Authority to retain title on the property during the abatement period.
  • Sales Tax Exemptions.

    • Clean Room Equipment
    • Computer Hardware and Software (granted for purchases or leases of more than
    • $15 million per year by a technology company or used in a technology facility)
    • Custom Computer Software Development
    • Electricity as a Raw Material
    • Industrial Materials (raw materials that will become a component in a finished product)
    • Items Purchased for Resale
    • Manufacturing Machinery (equipment used directly in making a product for
    • Packaging Materials (materials used for packaging tangible personal property for shipment or resale)
    • Pollution Control Equipment (machinery and equipment used for pollution
    • Primary Material Handling Equipment
    • Solar Energy Systems Machinery (used for heating/cooling/drying)
    • Telephone Ser ices (sales tax does not apply to intrastate, interstate, WATs or 1-800 calls)

Personal Income Tax

  • Georgia personal income tax is based on the Federal Adjusted Gross Income an individual or family reports annually to the Internal Revenue Service, plus or minus specific adjustments as provided by Georgia law.
  • The Georgia rate is 6 percent for most who file.

Unions and Work Laws

  • Georgia is a right-to-work state. Businesses must operate as open shops, with hiring conducted without regard to union membership.
  • Employers in Georgia are legally able to dismiss employees at will. “Wrongful discharge” is nonexistent in Georgia law.